PUCH 250 SGS

Restoring a barn-fresh 1966 Sears Allstate

Cool Puch

I was at a cabin in the Laurentians last week and I found myself leafing through a 2004 Vanity Fair, as one is apt to do on lazy summer days.  My eye was caught by familiar looking object int he magazine –  the Puch air filter! Lo and behold there was the king of Cool, James Dean, sitting on a Puch/Allstate on the set of Rebel Without A Cause. If you read the fine print the photo has been colourized, so I am not sure it is a green bike, but it looks like the 125cc with the skinny shocks and small headlight.

Puch_James_Dean

posted by Fastback in cool bikes,museums,rants & rambling and have No Comments

it all went black

In my mania to get the bike together for the CVMG rally, I’ve sprayed the nacelle, chain guard and fender with Tremclad.  The nacelle is in the bbq as I type, the toddler is in her bed trying not to nap, and the baby is on the floor chewing whatever she can get her hands on…

hold the sauce

hold the sauce

On previous projects I’ve gone all out and sprayed professional primer, base and clear, the biggest challenge has always been dust, dust, dust but clear-coat is pretty forgiving and can be sanded and polished. This is my first attempt at shooting Tremclad for a nice finish. The paint is on old can of Tremclad (Canadian name, it’s Rustoleum in the US) It is a tough rust paint (as the name suggests).

IMG_0217_fender_prime

In the spray booth, ran out of grey primer, had to run out and get some...

I thinned the paint with Laquer Thinner (a quick drying solvent), and sprayed it with a compressor/gun, it does come in rattle cans too. I painted my trailer with it and I remember it taking forever to dry, like a week. IMG_0225_fender_primeI’ve used 2 part professional auto paints previously but for this I just wanted it black and shiny, I was also in a rush so into the bbq it goes. I read somewhere that a good bake at 300° will set it up, and it did do the trick. I was worried that it might create problems with the body filler and primer, but nope, all good. I let it dry for about 2 hours so it was just tacky to the touch, then I gave it a cook, my deep fry/candy thermometer read about 280°so I thought it would be safe. As there is no chemical reaction happening, just the evaporation of solvents I figure a bake is just expediting the process; someone commented on a forum that baking might interfere with the rate and order in which the solvents evaporate, I figure if it doesn’t wrinkle, then it’s ok. A funny thing has happened, the longer I stare at my neglected, rusty, corroded and oxidized motorcycle, the more I like it that way. Paul,  from the outset, insisted I should just give it the “oily rag” finish, I was bent on sandblasting my way to Germanic perfection. Now Malcolm is urging me to just leave it alone too. The problem is, I’ve made a shiny spot or two and now I’m at a crossroads. Do I continue making shiny parts, or beat up the new stuff to look old..?

IMG_0238_fender_black_1

Got some bubbling from a few spots of spot filler that didn’t dry long enough, but for this bike at this stage it is certianly good enough. Don’t be fooled the photos look great but there is lots of dust, some spits and bumps in it, but overall I am really happy with my cheap and cheerful paint job.

IMG_0238_fender_black

There are a few dips, dots and the bottom edge is a bit ragged from chipping that I didn’t chase after…

posted by Fastback in restoration and have No Comments

Puch parts – and progress

I bit the bullet and ordered a new (low) Magura handle bar, and a complete headlight assembly as my chrome rim is shot and the reflector is completely fried (see photos). Ed (from the forum) and I grouped up on an RBO order to save on shipping.The headlight is euro spec, with a different build and a separate pilot bulb. Luckily I found I have a euro spec bulb, I think it was thrown-in at a swap meet purchase. I love the Puch logo on the lens.

I took the opportunity to dig into cleaning up the handle bar clamp as it is not available from RBO (I didn’t bother to check other vendors). The clamp was so corroded it was like a flaky bar, I took off a lot of material to get it down to where it was reasonable to try and polish, it came up rather ok, the before photo doesn’t show the actual corrosion eating into the alloy. The levers polished up nicely too, the lever and the clamp seem to be different alloys as they patina differently. I’m not going too crazy polishing, just getting them back to shiny so it looks good with those sparkly new bars.
Its nice to actually do some work on the Puch 250, it has been a long time sitting in the garage, waiting patiently.

posted by Fastback in parts,restoration and have Comments (2)

Parts are collecting…

Well,  summer went by and I didn’t get much done on the bikes, didn’t get much riding in either.  Discovered a nice road just out of the city on an evening ride, up and down country lane at dusk – quite beautiful.

PING tinkle tinkle… was the sound I heard when I pulled my clutch lever. It was a lovely Friday afternoon and I thought I’d zip up the highway to a meeting- alas I didn’t make it as I got stuck in stop-and-go traffic when the clutch cable nipple went flying.
Luckily I didn’t rear end the car in front of me as I was only going at a walking pace, uncharacteristically I was positioned in the curb lane and rode up the shoulder to the next exit- whew.
The DVP rightly bears the nickname Don Valley Parking Lot, it was built for 60,000 cars a day and regularly sees 100,000. Needless to say,  the Norton gearbox was not happy about that ride home. On the bright side, I only had to stop twice – once on the off ramp and once for a delivery truck on doing a 6 point turn…  I avoided lights on major arteries by ducking into the residential streets, making my way by rolling stops and shifting fairly smoothly with throttle blips and careful foot work.

Last weekend I attended the CVMG Milton Swap meet, it was a bit chilly and we arrived late, so the pickings were slim and vendors were packing up. I picked up a new clutch cable for my Norton Commando and met “Drago” who is the local Puch expert. I’ve heard his name mentioned and now I know how to find him! He had a few bins of Puch parts. No doubt I will contact him as I dig into the restorations.

250 SGS piston - twingle parts

Puch M125 Transmission cases

There were very few bike for sale, a nicely restored AJS scrambler, just begging to get dirty.

Restored AJS Scrambler

The other extreme was this Sears badged Gilera. It is always nice to find bikes in worse shape then you own…!

more then a little Autosol needed here...

1960's Sears Gilera

Today I received 1.8kg of nuts and bolts. They will come in handy for when I reassemble the Puch 250 SGS.

369 screws, bolts, washers and nuts

369 screws, bolts, washers and nuts

I also recently received the seat springs for the solo seat for the Puch 250sgs. It was far more complicated than it should have been. The springs made it from Austria to Germany, into my father’s suitcase and finally to me. It was faster and easier to just ship 3.8lbs of nuts  directly to my door.

Lesson learned.

Puch 250sgs parts - so far....

Puch 250sgs parts - so far....

My plan is to get the ’66 SGS up and running – sort out the sidecar mounts (weld?) and then when all is fettled and sorted, do the body work, paint & chrome. Here’s my secret weapon- sandblasting pressure pot. I was going to make one – but it seemed like alot of work when this was on sale. Just need to make a blasting booth.

Princess Auto special....

Princess Auto special....

posted by Fastback in events/shows,parts,rants & rambling,restoration,Uncategorized and have Comments (9)

CVMG National Rally: Paris 2010

It isn’t Mid-Ohio, but it does have some fine bikes and if you look closely there might be a part or two on the tables worth haggling for. I’ve been attending the Canadian Vintage Motorcycle Group annual Rally in Paris, ON for over a decade and have seen many of the bikes previously, so the photo gallery below is what tickled my fancy.  Notable this year were a few Sears Allstate bikes, a nicely restored Gilera, and a few other PUCH motorcyles in lesser states of restoration. There were the usual Triumphs, Nortons, BSA etc, new this year were the Indians and the really old flat tank Harleys. I did run into a guy on the road leading to the Paris Farigrounds, he had a Velorex 560 attached to a Triumph (or was it a BSA), I asked him what he thought and he said it was a friends and it’s scary! Hmm, not sure which part is scary. I particularly enjoyed the Nimbus with a Steib sidecar, there is something about a Nimbus…

2010 marked the 100th anniversary of Rudge, there were some fine Rudge motorcycles on display, this video was taken at the end of the Concours judging on Sunday.  I usually time my Sunday visit for the end of the judging so I can hear the bikes start up and drive off.

posted by Fastback in cool bikes,events/shows and have No Comments